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THE WORLD | RUN-UP TO A SUMMIT

2 Bombs Explode in Italy

July 19, 2001|From Associated Press

MILAN, Italy — Parcel bombs exploded Wednesday in the offices of clothing giant Benetton and at a TV station owned by Prime Minister Silvio Berlusconi, heightening fears of violence at the upcoming Group of 8 summit in Genoa.

No serious injuries were reported from the package that blew up at the Benetton office in Treviso, near Venice. The device was contained in a book that exploded when it was opened, the Italian news agency ANSA said.

However, the secretary in Milan who opened a parcel addressed to the news director of the Tg4 news show was slightly injured, ANSA said.

On Monday, a parcel bomb blew up in the hands of a Genoa policeman, seriously injuring him.

Police said there were no immediate claims of responsibility for the blasts Wednesday, which came as bomb scares rattled nerves across Italy ahead of the G-8 summit, which opens Friday. The summit will bring together the leaders of the U.S., Canada, Britain, France, Italy, Germany, Japan and Russia.

In Bologna, officials disarmed an explosive device attached to a bicycle in the center of town, ANSA said. And in Genoa, police intercepted an envelope with two bullets and a photo of a leading protester that had been addressed to Genoa's mayor, the agency said.

An employment agency in Milan was set afire early Wednesday after its window was broken and flammable liquid was poured inside. Nobody was inside at the time, and the blaze was put out quickly.

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